We walk into City Pork mid afternoon on Sunday, and it’s packed. Luckily, there are two free spots on the bar, so we ask the host if we can snag those. Of course we can. Excellent.
The bar is bustling with families and friends who have come for City Pork’s famous charcuterie. We start with a cocktail, which is excellent and bodes well for the dinner service. The waitress gives us her opinion on the sandwiches (because honestly, it’s hard to choose). The “Big Pig,” for which City Pork is most well known, is good, she says. But it’s just another pork sandwich. For something special, she suggests Brisket. If we need a nap, try a Pork Belly Hoagie (that would be coffee-braised pork belly, house bacon, mustard greens, and smoked cheddar on Cuban bread). As tempted as we are by the pork belly, we need to do things after this.
So we go with the Brisket. But first, a salad and some wings. Because, balance. The fresh green salad is sprinkled with bacon lardons and a tangy pepper jelly vinaigrette. There are also a few slices of radishes and halved cherry tomatoes. The Sticky Wings are generous in portion (there are 10), and not too heavily dressed with a cane cola-ginger chili glaze. The meat is juicy and the sauce sweet and slightly spicy.
The Brisket sandwich usually comes with Cajun-toasted house potato chips, but we decide to go with mac ‘n’ cheese, because it feels more true to the barbecue theme. It’s served in a small mason jar and topped with crunchy bread crumbs; be sure to dig deep, because the creamy jalapeño cheese that falls to the bottom is worth mixing up.
I am not usually a brisket fan, but this is one of the best I’ve tasted. After being smoked for 14 hours and sliced incredibly thin, it’s layered atop a super light, slightly sweet, and ever-so-squishy brioche bun. A mix of pickled onions and sweet pickles create an interesting dichotomy of sweet and sour with the same general texture. Horseradish cream is spicy enough to pull everything together.
I look forward to coming back for a charcuterie plate and that pork belly sandwich (when we need a nap).